Driving a hybrid car does not differ much from doing it with conventional gasoline or automatic diesel car. The differences are focused on specific driving routines that will make it possible to take advantage of the energy that does not cost money, that is, the electric motor. Thanks to it you can obtain the desired fuel (and CO 2 emissions ) savings.
Before listing these routines to drive a hybrid car efficiently, it is important to remember that, unlike plug-in hybrids (PHEV), which have rechargeable batteries by an external charger, hybrids or HEVs have batteries that recharge automatically.
They take advantage of, on the one hand, the transformation of the kinetic energy, of releasing the accelerator or stepping on the brake, in electric, feeding the batteries. On the other, the combustion engine’s own energy, which is transformed into electricity and stored in batteries.
The Keys to driving a hybrid car efficiently
1. Start in electric mode
Hybrid car modest is necessary to know in advance what modes of driving the vehicle possesses since the use of one or the other in certain situations will depend on the increase in efficiency. As a general rule, most hybrid cars have four driving modes: normal (by default when starting), electric (EV), ECO and Power (or Sport).
When starting, take advantage of the energy stored in the battery to start moving only with the electric motor. But remember that you can only do it at very low speed or with a limited range (40 km / h per hour and around 5 km in the Toyota). When a specific speed is exceeded or when the battery reaches a specific load percentage, it replaces the combustion engine in the transmission.
2. Use the ECO for city
hybrid car indicatorThe EV or electric mode can be used for browsing, searching for parking, maneuvering or driving through residential areas (as long as the battery has an electrical charge). However, in other situations within the city, it is convenient to drive in ECO mode, although this may entail a smoother speed than desired.
It is also possible to use it on the road. We will find the problem when we want the vehicle to be reactive in situations such as overtaking. The ECO mode is the most efficient at low and medium speeds (up to 75 km / h, approximately) and in urban environments.
3. Power mode in accelerations and uploads
Kia Niro HybridThere is models in which to need more power to overcome steep slopes, mountain passes or overtaking, both engines, electric and thermal, could be combined to increase the acceleration capacity and also safety. In those moments, the electric motor would serve as turbocharging, this is the concept used by micro-hybrid vehicles. They use a battery and a small motor that supports the thermal at specific times.
If you want a car that does not limit your response, the best option is to drive with the vehicle in Power mode. Each brand has designed its hybrid vehicle to take advantage of all the opportunities that our driving allows it to save on energy. However, the consumption figures will be very different from the ECO mode seen before.
4. Recovers energy in the descents
When starting a descent, releasing the accelerator and braking gently, you can use to regenerate the indicator ‘Charge’ or level of charge of the batteries. Some hybrids like those of Toyota (Auris, Corolla, Yaris, C-HR or Prius) have in the gear lever the position B. Which is the motor brake, which will avoid using the brake in excess and increase safety and comfort marching. It is the best keys to driving a hybrid car efficiently.
5. Combustion engine for high speeds
On the road, driving at speeds above 100 km / h, the combustion engine takes center stage due to its greater efficiency compared to the electric motor. In addition, if you activate driving assistance systems such as cruise control. You will maintain a constant speed without variations, which helps to save fuel, due to the absence of accelerations.
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6. Brake smoothly and progressively
toyota Yaris hybrid car with a hybrid car it is advisable to brake gently. That is why it is very important to act with more anticipation than a conventional car to obtain maximum efficiency. Releasing the accelerator first, the hybrid system begins to recharge the battery, which is called a regenerative brake. Then, if you brake gently you will continue to recover energy, spending much less than if you braked. The more charge the battery receives, the longer we can use the electric motor, thus reducing fuel consumption. It is one of the best keys to driving a hybrid car efficiently.
7. Anticipate, the key to driving a hybrid
Driving a hybrid car involves acting with foresight, in order to regenerate the batteries in all situations. Thus, experts recommend taking advantage of familiar routes, especially urban, to recover energy. Anticipate stops at traffic lights, crossings with pedestrian crossings, intersections with priority, to apply this regenerative brake. Instead of waiting for the last moment to break, anticipate that braking. And let the car lose speed on its own to slow down at the last moment. Let it go until you reach the traffic light or the Stop.
It is also advisable to increase the safety distance on the road. There will be more room and time to release the accelerator and slow down progressively. They are small changes that you will automate quickly if you turn them into a routine.